Charlotte Hornets owner Michael Jordan is in talks to sell a majority stake in the franchise, a person briefed on the details of the negotiations has confirmed to Athleticism THURSDAY. ESPN broke the news for the first time. Here’s what you need to know:
- Jordan is reportedly in talks to sell his majority stake to a group led by minority Hornets owner Gabe Plotkin and minority Hawks owner Rick Schnall.
- The six-time NBA champion became majority owner of the Charlotte franchise – then known as the Bobcats – in March 2010.
- Jordan paid $275 million for the franchise.
The Hornets are currently 22-49 and sit 14th in the Eastern Conference. They have been hampered by injuries this season. Star goalkeeper LaMelo Ball is out for the rest of the season with a broken ankle he suffered in February, and forward Gordon Hayward missed time with a broken shoulder. left he suffered in November.
What this means for the NBA
The NBA owner exit streak continues. This is the third major share team to change hands this season – after the Bucks’ share of the Suns and Marc Lasry – and it may indicate how the league is at a perfect inflection point now that the Longer-time owners are now cashing in as franchise values grow ever, ever higher. This is the perfect time to get cash if you are looking for it.
But it’s also a loss for the league in many ways. While valuations may continue to rise with this sale — the Hornets’ valuation is still unknown — it will be a hit for the NBA. Jordan is a legend. He’s not just a top player who ended up buying a team, he’s arguably the greatest player of all time. He’s a good person to keep in the league in an important position.
Jordan is also currently the only black majority owner in the NBA. This too is a horror for the league. — Vorkunov
What this means for the Hornets
It will surely be a new era for the franchise. Jordan bought the team in 2010, and the Hornets had just three winning campaigns in the full 13 seasons under his control. The Hornets don’t have a big front office, but they are several executives who have long-standing ties to Jordan.
A new ownership group, with Plotkin, which has held a minority stake since 2019, and Schnall could take the franchise in a new direction.
(Photo: Jacob Kupferman/Getty Images)